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AOL SuperBuddy ActiveX fails to properly validate method arguments

Vulnerability Note VU#478225

Original Release Date: 2007-04-05 | Last Revised: 2007-04-05


The AOL SuperBuddy ActiveX control does not properly validate arguments to the LinkSBIcons() method. This vulnerability may allow a remote, unauthenticated attacker to execute arbitrary code on a vulnerable system.


The AOL SuperBuddy ActiveX control (Sb.SuperBuddy.1) is a component that comes with AOL software. This control contains the method LinkSBIcons(), which takes an address as an argument. This address is user-controlled and not validated before it is dereferenced, possibly allowing an attacker to overwrite arbitrary process memory.

Note that the AOL SuperBuddy ActiveX control is marked as "safe for scripting" . This allows the vulnerability to be triggered by viewing a specially crafted HTML document.

Exploit code for this vulnerability is publicly available.


By convincing a user to view a specially crafted HTML document (e.g., a web page or an HTML email message or attachment), an attacker may be able to execute arbitrary code with the privileges of the user. The attacker could also cause Internet Explorer (or the program using the WebBrowser control, such as the AOL browser) to crash.


Apply an update
This issue is addressed by AOL automatic updates. Log in to the AOL service to receive the appropriate update automatically.

Some systems come pre-loaded with AOL software. Since AOL security updates are distributed by signing on to AOL, the following workarounds should be applied if AOL is not being used:

Disable the SuperBuddy ActiveX control

The AOL SuperBuddy ActiveX control can be disabled by setting the kill bit for the following CLSID:

More information about how to set the kill bit is available in Microsoft Support Document 240797.

Disable ActiveX

Disabling ActiveX controls in the Internet Zone (or any zone used by an attacker) appears to prevent exploitation of this vulnerability. Instructions for disabling ActiveX in the Internet Zone can be found in the "Securing Your Web Browser" document and the Malicious Web Scripts FAQ.

Vendor Information


America Online, Inc. Unknown

Updated:  April 05, 2007



Vendor Statement

We have not received a statement from the vendor.

Vendor Information

The vendor has not provided us with any further information regarding this vulnerability.

CVSS Metrics

Group Score Vector



This vulnerability was publicly disclosed in TippingPoint Security Advisory TSRT-07-03.

This document was written by Jeff Gennari.

Other Information

CVE IDs: CVE-2006-5820
Severity Metric: 19.01
Date Public: 2007-03-30
Date First Published: 2007-04-05
Date Last Updated: 2007-04-05 13:32 UTC
Document Revision: 17

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